Born 1976, Sydney
Lives and works in Sydney
Theatre of Paint
8 April — 17 April 2021
Theatre of Paint
Christopher Horder is an artist who sees the world differently. There is an intensity to his image making that extends beyond the representational. His vision comes from within—the implication of the landscape as his starting point. A profoundly articulate draftsman, Horder’s exquisitely rendered drawings hint at the precision of his eye and hand. In his latest exhibition the artist transfers his expressive mark making to compositions executed in oil paint.
Horder has been moved by Giovanni Battista Tiepolo’s frescoed ceilings and religious altarpieces—homages to a higher power. Horder’s deity however, is the natural world—the force that exists, both primal and subliminal. It is what we cannot see. It is the shift in season, the slide of day, the aura of nature’s unfolding, eternal spirit. Transposing nature’s moments into a magnificent, theatrical language, Horder’s evocative works become abstract representations of our world’s surrounds. Through the use of chiaroscuro, pastel bursts of light contrast his deep hues. Nature reveals it’s flurry of matter in wild exuberance. With his carefully limited palette, Horder’s works become an anthology of Haiku poetry—capturing a brief moment in time and teasing out the beauty within.
In the Theatre of Paint, Horder controls the exuberance of his marks—anchoring the artist among painters like John Constable and Claude Monet. Evocative of Monet’s Water Lilies series, it is through thoughtful strokes that Horder’s works capture the subtle shifts within the landscape—the ever-changing flux of movement in the natural world. We see the falling of autumn leaves and bruised petals twisting in the frenzied wind—the fragility, beauty and radiance of nature entwined.
To understand nature is to understand humankind. Nature has taught us so much about our existence. It has taught us the significance of cyclical growth, decay and renewal. Through the hand of the artist, we develop a deeper understanding of the sacred life force familiar to us all, and in turn, ourselves.